Forgotten Aerodromes of World War 1, by Martyn Chorlton

Forgotten Aerodromes of World War 1, by Martyn Chorlton
Subtitled 'British Military aerodromes, seaplane stations, flying boat and airship stations to 1920'

Published by Crecy in 2014, 272 pages. Hardback with Dust Jacket - c.22.5cm by 29cm (N7000)

Brand New Book

From the front inside fly leaf: Just over a decade after the Wright brothers had made their first powered flight, the world found itself embroiled in its first global conflict. As the weakness of traditional weapons was exposed, the development of military hardware - including the aeroplane - soon accelerated. Initially, aircraft were seen only as a useful reconnaissance machine which could provide an extra set of eyes for the Army and Navy. But as the importance of the flying machine was fully realised, the need for pilots, observers and improved aircraft began to gather speed and flying-related establishments began to appear, often overnight, allover Britain.

Initially little more than open fields, some of these sites quickly became complex vibrant stations, with complicated infrastructures built at great expense. It was at these stations that many of the RAF's most famous squadrons were born and future aces trained and, as the first aertalbornbinq campaign started, it was from these airfields that pilots flew into battle with the Zeppelins and Gothas trying to reach Britain's town and cities.

Some of these sites grew into airfields still in use today, others saw only a few years before being closed down and forgotten. All of them played a vital role in Britain's local and aviation heritage.

From the rear side cover: Military aviation, and indeed the aeroplane itself, was still in its infancy as the opening shots of World War I were fired. Nevertheless, the potential of the aeroplane soon became apparent and Britain found itself with a desperate need for pilots, aircraft and of course the airfields to operate from. By the end of the conflict, Britain had over 500 military aviation sites, ranging from fully operational aerodromes, airship stations, seaplane stations, acceptance parks, kite balloon stations and aircraft factories to non-flying stations such as group and wing HQs.

Some of these sites were little more than open fields with temporary accommodation used only for a few months, others were fully operational airfields with aircraft hangars and buildings which can still be seen today. All of them played their part in the birth of military aviation in Britain and although some of these airfields are still active today, many more were decommissioned and faded into obscurity, their dramatic past all but forgotten.

Forgotten Aerodromes of World War I is a comprehensive guide to these sites, their history and the stories of the men and machines that flew from them. Organised by country and county and using OS map references, each of these airfields is described in detail including information on the site itself, the period of active service, units and aircraft stationed there and the current use of the site, including particulars of any remaining structures from WW1.

With over 300 photographs, maps and colour profiles, Forgotten Aerodromes of World War I is the perfect touring guide and companion to the Action Stations Revisited series as well as a vital reference guide for any historian or enthusiast with an interest in local history and Britain's military aviation heritage.